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View Diary: Ex-Montana Gov. Brian Schweitzer stokes some fires (165 comments)

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  •  From purely a policy standpoint (1+ / 0-)
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    ban nock

    there isn't a vast difference between the two. If Schweitzer were in the Senate, you can be sure that he'd vote against any gun control bills, for example.

    As a Montanan, I think it would be a huge mistake to give up the seniority in the Senate for the sake of purity.

    Small varmints, if you will.

    by aztecraingod on Wed Feb 20, 2013 at 12:32:13 PM PST

    [ Parent ]

    •  It's Not Just Policy. (25+ / 0-)

      Schweitzer is a better politician than Baucus, he's younger, and Baucus hasn't polled outside the 40's in the state since the ACA.  Losing seniority is better than losing the seat, especially if it nets us someone better as it would with Schweitzer.

    •  Valid point (1+ / 0-)
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      ban nock

      I'm not a super-big fan of Baucus, more because of tax cuts than anything else, but I think the diary is a little harsh as to his role in health care reform.  There were never the votes for single payer, and I suppose a public option might have passed reconciliation sooner or with more support from senior moderates, but that's hindsight.  Baucus was chair of the committee that passed the fucking thing, and he gave us Jim Messina (which I consider a good thing).

      Difficult, difficult, lemon difficult.

      by Loge on Wed Feb 20, 2013 at 12:39:44 PM PST

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      •  He didn't give single payer a seat at the table (3+ / 0-)
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        VirginiaBlue, JVolvo, JohnnySacks

        He didn't even allow single payer advocates to present their case. There may not have been the votes, but they probably would have paved the way to some form of public option.

        Baucus is a tool of the private healthcare industry and does their bidding. What he passed could have been a LOT better.

        •  Finance was one of many committees (0+ / 0-)

          that had jurisdiction over parts of the bill, and the flipside is that by working with insurance companies, something got passed, instead of letting the perfect be the enemy of the good.  I'm sure he could have done more, largely by moving faster once Franken was seated, but casting him as an enemy of health care reform misses the forest for the trees.  And I'm someone who thinks there's a lot not to like about Max Baucus.  

          Difficult, difficult, lemon difficult.

          by Loge on Thu Feb 21, 2013 at 08:14:11 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  I remember the ACA debates (0+ / 0-)

        And it was Baucus who sank the public option.

        Schweitzer is just as electable (probably more so), and is ardently pro-health reform.

        That alone makes him an improvement against Max Baucus.

        "Violence never requires translation, but it often causes deafness." - Bareesh the Hutt.

        by Australian2 on Thu Feb 21, 2013 at 04:22:37 AM PST

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        •  I don't disagree, (0+ / 0-)

          and obviously a Senator can't get away with passively saying the votes aren't there, but I don't see a plausible path to passage even in hindsight with Baucus supporting public option.

          I think other issues are the bigger concerns with Baucus, but I don't know what "ardent" is supposed to mean.  He talks a better game?  

          Difficult, difficult, lemon difficult.

          by Loge on Thu Feb 21, 2013 at 08:09:11 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  "Ardent", in this context, (0+ / 0-)

            means that Schweitzer - who bussed seniors to Canada to get their scripts filled and attempted to implement single-payer in Montana - believes in health care reform more than Max Baucus ever will.

            "Violence never requires translation, but it often causes deafness." - Bareesh the Hutt.

            by Australian2 on Thu Feb 21, 2013 at 10:54:58 AM PST

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            •  Fair enough, (0+ / 0-)

              they both have pretty good health care records, in my view, just picking up the stick at different ends.  Baucus and Messina did a very good job integrating a lot of moving parts, economically and politically, and considering how many attempts there were to pass something even less progressive than the ACA that failed, I think this is barking up the wrong tree.  He sucks on taxes, though.

              Difficult, difficult, lemon difficult.

              by Loge on Thu Feb 21, 2013 at 11:10:11 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

    •  Screw seniority (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ichibon, Eyesbright

      What benefit do you derive as a Montanan from Baucus' seniority that you would lose should Schweitzer run and beat him?

      That's a seriously weak argument to make for Baucus.

      And it may not be a "policy" difference but I'll bet that if Schweitzer ever gets elected to the Senate, he isn't going to leave through the revolving door and become a lobbyist.

      It gets back to something Markos talked about when I saw him on one of his early book tours and how it comes down to values; they may be similar in positions on policy but I think that Schweitzer shares my values more so than Baucus so were I a Montanan, I would be more inclined to support Schweitzer than Baucus eve though I disagree with him on some key issues.

      Arrrr, the laws of science be a harsh mistress. -Bender B. Rodriguez

      by democracy inaction on Wed Feb 20, 2013 at 04:53:03 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  It's gonna happen at some point. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ichibon, Eyesbright, Calamity Jean

      Baucus is in his 70s. Nobody lives forever. I'd be tickled if he announced his retirement 'round about now. Even if Schweiter's weak on carbon, he's a lot better on a lot of other stuff.

      Mark Twain: It ain't what you don't know that gets you into trouble. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so.

      by Land of Enchantment on Wed Feb 20, 2013 at 05:00:03 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

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